Gasteria excelsa "Cala"
Origin: Stayner s.n., Top of Cala Pass, Eastern Cape Province, South Africa (ex. Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden)
One of the most attractive rosette forming species of Gasteria. This plant is similar to G. excelsa but is found at a very high altitude far inland from where it is usually found. The plants are very compact with chunky rosettes. The leaves are dark green in shade to almost black exposed to more sun. It is a really neat and slow-growing plant and forms very attractive specimen plants after several years of cultivation.
Plant size: Well established propagations, about 15 cm from tip to tip are offered.
A young plant of "Cala" starting to develop its very chunky habit.
Gasteria is a small genus of easy-growing Southern African plants, commonly known as "beestong" (Afrikaans) which translates to Ox tounge, for its rough textured strap-shaped leaves, this is especially a character of Gasteria batesiana. There are about 25 recognised species and are predominantly found in the Eastern Cape and Western Cape, but also known from the Northern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and Mpumalanga. The genus is nearly endemic to South Africa, but is also recorded from Namibia and Swaziland.
Caring for your Gasteria
Pot: Do not over-pot your Gasteria, they like to grow in smaller containers, the plants are also more compact.
Soil: The plants prefer a well drained soil, a mixture of sandy soil with some organic matter
Light: The brighter the light the more colourful your plant. Gasterias can grow in shady to brighter conditions, however they are more compact and colourful when bright light is given. Avoid direct sunlight if the plant is not used to it.
Water: Your plant should dry out for a few days between watering. Over-watering can cause the leaves to burst and crack along the length. Avoid watering the coldest months of the year.